Whoa, slow down, that’s a loaded question. Filing a lawsuit is easy, right? You just draw up a few papers, file them with the Court, and get what you want in a few days…actually, no. It’s not like that AT ALL. In fact, most Trust and Will lawsuits take some time to plan out, draft and file with the Court; but why is that?
First, you should know that the law is not black and white. And the law is never applied in a vacuum, instead law must be applied to a set of facts. The problem is that all the facts and evidence cannot be fully known when you are first drafting a Trust or Will lawsuit because you just don’t have time to uncover the entire truth. So you work with what you know and you put the facts together as best you can. Those facts then need to be blended with the law to come up with your legal arguments in the final draft of your lawsuit that is filed with the Court. Bottom line: this takes time. To have a good filing, you need to put in the time and effort to make it so.
Second, successful lawyers are already busy with other cases. So while you Trust and Will lawsuit is undoubtedly important, we lawyers need to make time to fit it into our schedules. Not always easy, but doable with some patience and work. Bottom line: it may take a day or two to get started on your Trust or Will lawsuit.
Third, you are the final (and most important) editor of your lawsuit filing. Yes, you, the client, play an important role in preparing a Trust or Will lawsuit for filing. You are the one with knowledge of the facts, the past, the history, the backstory—call it what you will, you matter. And people are different, some prefer a great degree of detail while others prefer a general overview. No one way is right, both have their advantages and disadvantages. But as a client, you have the right (maybe even the obligation) to review and edit the court filing your lawyers prepare. Your input is vital, but your input can also take time. Time for you to review and comment, time for the lawyers to input your changes or discuss your comments with you, and time to blend this all together into the best possible court filing you can have. Remember, your court filing need not be perfect, but it should be as good as we can make it with the time we have. Bottom line: your input matters, but it also adds time to the process.
So exactly how long should it take to prepare and filing the opening filing for you Trust or Will lawsuit? Typically about two weeks or so. Sometimes less, sometimes more. If you are well beyond two weeks, then something may be amiss.